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Pasta Sauce Raphael

Pasta Sauce Raphael - A bold and zesty pasta sauce from The Silver Palate Cookbook.  This is delicious served hot or cold!

If you’ve followed A Family Feast for a while now, then you already know what a huge fan I am of the long-time classic, The Silver Palate Cookbook.

That cookbook was one of the very first that I owned and years later, it still has a strong influence on the way that I like to cook – recipes with sophisticated flavors made from accessible ingredients using simple cooking techniques.

This dish – Pasta Sauce Raphael – is a popular recipe from that cookbook, and it combines simple ingredients into one amazing sauce! Tomatoes (fresh or canned), onions, garlic, and artichokes are transformed into a bold and zesty sauce that is flavored with basil, oregano, parsley, crushed red pepper flakes and coarsely ground black pepper. Some freshly grated Romano cheese is added at the end, just before serving this fantastic sauce over cooked pasta.


Pasta Sauce Raphael - A bold and zesty pasta sauce from The Silver Palate Cookbook.  This is delicious served hot or cold!

I should note that the original recipe in The Silver Palate listed three tablespoons of coarsely ground black pepper in the recipe which we found to be far (FAR!) too much. So our version cuts it back to one tablespoon of pepper which still gives this Pasta Sauce Raphael a great, zesty kick (but not TOO much of a kick)! Feel free, of course, to add more pepper if you’d like.

This Pasta Sauce Raphael can be served hot or cold, but we think it’s best served along with some nice crusty Italian bread for soaking up every last bit of this sauce!

Adapted from The Silver Palate Cookbook.

Pasta Sauce Raphael - A Family Feast

Pasta Sauce Raphael

  • Prep Time: 30 mins
  • Cook Time: 1 hour 30 mins
  • Total Time: 2 hours
  • Yield: 6-8 servings


If using canned tomatoes, skip steps 1-4.


  • 4 pounds ripe fresh tomatoes (or if using canned – 6 cups of whole tomatoes)
  • ½ cup good quality extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 cups roughly chopped onion
  • 3 tablespoons minced garlic
  • ¼ cup dried basil
  • ½ tablespoon dried oregano
  • ½ cup fresh Italian parsley, chopped
  • ½ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1 tablespoon coarsely ground black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 2 6-ounce jars marinated artichokes (reserve marinade)
  • ¼ cup freshly grated Romano cheese plus more for serving
  • 1 pound Cellentani, or your favorite pasta


  1. If using fresh garden tomatoes, bring a large pot of water to a boil. Then remove core and cut an X into the opposite end of each tomato. Have an ice bath standing by. When the water boils place half the tomatoes in the water and leave in just until the skins start to peel back (less than a minute). With a spider or strainer, remove to ice bath and place second half of tomatoes into water and repeat process.
  2. Have a bowl with a strainer on your counter and another bowl next to it.
  3. Remove tomatoes from ice bath to a platter and one at a time, remove skin and place skin in strainer over the bowl. Then cut tomato in half horizontally and scoop seeds out into strainer. Take the tomato meat and place in the second bowl. Repeat for all tomatoes.
  4. Once done, press the skin and seeds in the strainer and let the squeezed juice fall into the bowl below. Discard the seeds and skin and add the juice to the bowl with the tomato meat. This should be about six cups.
  5. In a medium to large pot, add olive oil, onions, garlic, basil, oregano, parsley and pepper flakes and bring up to medium heat. Sauté this mixture for five minutes on medium heat.
  6. Add crushed black pepper, salt and tomatoes and bring to a medium simmer. Simmer uncovered for one hour stirring occasionally.
  7. Bring a pot of water to a boil while working on next step.
  8. After the hour, add the marinade from the artichokes to the sauce but not the artichokes themselves yet. Cook 15 minutes more at a slow simmer, stirring occasionally.
  9. Add pasta to pot of boiling water while preparing next step.
  10. Add the artichokes to sauce and cook for another 10 minutes.
  11. Drain pasta.
  12. Add Romano cheese to sauce. Add cooked pasta to sauce and cook for just a few minutes to meld flavors. Alternatively, you could serve the sauce separate from the pasta or just ladle the sauce over each portion of pasta.
  13. Serve with additional Romano cheese.

Disclosure: This post contain affiliate links.

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  1. Oh wow, one look and I can just taste that! It looks so rich and flavorful, plus – artichokes! I have to add this to the menu for this week.

  2. This pasta dish looks so hearty and delicious. Love the addition of artichokes.

  3. Anything veggie rich gets added to my hubby’s and my ‘date night’ list. This sounds absolutely divine!!!

  4. Oh this pasta looks so yummy. I love the addition of the artichoke hearts!

  5. this looks amazing and so easy to make

  6. Gosh I had forgotten about that cookbook. That is champion sauce. It is really coating the pasta. I read the recipe twice because the picture of the sauce looks soooo thick and laced with spices. Excellent.

  7. You can never go wrong with those ingredients. And I love artichokes. Delicious!

  8. Love the artichokes in this…I don’t have the cookbook, but I’ve heard such good things about it…like their Chicken Marbella. Sounds like another outstanding dish!

  9. This is so my kind of meal! I want a big bowl right now! Please 😉

  10. I am a cookbook collector and I also own that book. Love it! You have brought the recipe to life and it sounds wonderful.

  11. It’s been a while since I’ve had this amazing sauce. I think that’s going to change this week ; )

  12. This looks incredibly delicious. I can’t believe that the original recipe called for 3 tablespoons of black pepper. I am a pepper lover but I think that would kill me. Anyway, I’m glad you still added 1 tablespoon. That sounds perfect!

    • Thanks Renee! Three tablespoons DID practically kill us the first time we made this sauce – but we tried it again with less and it’s delicious!

  13. Mmm. This looks so tasty. Love the addition of artichokes — and that this has that zesty kick. Totally up my alley!

  14. Wow. Forget the pasta! I think I could eat a bowl of this sauce with a loaf of crusty bread.

  15. That sauce looks rich and delicious, love the artichokes in there too!

  16. Pinning! This looks amazing!

  17. Loving this pasta sauce! Never had sauce with artichoke! I will have to try this one!

  18. This looks so good! I love those big pieces of artichoke – yum!

  19. I just started going omg, omg, omg, so the family came in to see what I was freaking out over. So they started going omg, omg, omg. Seriously woman, this is beyond gorgeous. No rational thoughts right now. I’m just sitting here thinking “get in mah bellah”.

  20. Why, oh why don’t I own this book?! I think I can smell the bold richness of this beautiful dish from my screen! OK, not really. But I wish I could. This is beautiful! P.S. Yes, 3 tablespoons of pepper would have been a bit much. 🙂

  21. I too am a big fan of that cookbook and I’m wondering why this recipe hasn’t caught my attention? Looks incredible. And as much as I love pepper, I agree, that seems like a lot. Thanks for sharing. Pinned.

  22. Do you really use 1/4 cup of dried basil? The silver palate calls for much, much less. Wondering if this is correct. The picture looks delicious.

    • Oh gosh Kelly – Great question! I will have to look back at our original notes (we may have used that much fresh basil) – but if you are making the recipe right now, definitely go by what the Silver Palate says. Thanks for your question – we will update the recipe!